Wednesday, January 18, 2017

Study Spotlight: Integration of Strength & Conditioning Principles Into a Rehab Program

By: Joel Luedke

This isn't your 'traditional' study or one that we typically cover on TAT but we thought it was
interesting none the less for any practitioner and/or person in the field of strength and conditioning or fitness.  We've talked on TAT before about 'working out' vs. 'training' and the need for a program or just a general plan when it comes to working with athletes/clients. A focus on the long term can yield much better results than just trying to wear yourself down each time you work out.

Also, while strength and conditioning and rehabilitation seem so far away from each other they really aren't when you break it down.  A colleague of mine said it best "the main differences between strength and conditioning and rehab are volume and intensity, that's about it".  When you really take that statement and break it down for the most part it is correct (I know there are arguments against it).  A lot of the same movements occur in both areas but are adjusted based on the condition and state of the athlete.  Now to the study.

What They Did:
In this study researchers went back and look in one journal database from 1950-2011 and another from 1982-2011 to find any information that they could that looked at using strength and conditioning principles in an injury rehabilitation program.  The reviewed all the articles they could and looked for potential outcomes from the studies.

What They Found:
The short answer is they didn't find much for research regarding utilizing these principles in injury rehab.  Apparently it has not been studied very much or looked at.

What It All Means:
You would think that based on 'what they found' answer this article isn't worth much and from the conclusion in the abstract you're probably right but look a little closer.

The article goes on to do a really good job breaking down why it would be beneficial to implement some of the principles of strength and conditioning into rehabilitation. The idea of putting a 'program' to your rehab is one that shouldn't be surprising but I know for me it made me think beyond just coming up with exercises for my athletes and actually thinking about the process they would need to go through to get back to health.  I had always increased difficulty and intensity as we progressed in their rehab and worked back into return to play but after spending more time in strength and conditioning and getting more familiar with these principles it was an eye opener.

The subtle differences you can find that increase the intensity and help better prepare someone for a return from injury are plentiful and having a plan when you start helps out tremendously.  The bottom line of this Study Spotlight is again to focus on creating a plan and/or program for whatever you are doing with a client/athlete and not just throwing something together on any given day.  It will help you not only yield more results but also limit your risk of injury along the way.

LINK: Integration of Strength and Conditioning Principles Into a Rehabilitation Program

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